Imagine how much better we would all eat if we had a chef shopping and cooking for us. If we didn’t need to think about what to cook and whether we had the ingredients but simply show up and eat. It sounds ideal doesn’t it ? This isn’t really a solution for most of us so I would recommend a few ways to reduce the mental load and make it a little easier to shop and cook without having to waste too much time and energy in the process.
Setting up a two week menu that you rotate with a few seasonal adjustments can be a good tool. The menu below if what I am currently working around. Ideally one night’s meal becomes a second meal reheating leftovers or reusing some of the ingredients. Here is a sample 2 week menu you can then adjust based on your own preferences (you get one night off a week for a meal out or takeaway).
Monday Easy Carve leg of lamb with roast vegetables (potatoes, pumpkin, parsnip or carrots depending on the season) and greens (steamed beans or blackened asparagus).
Tuesday Leftover lamb from roast as Lamb Biriyani or Shepherd’s Pie. Click here for an easy recipe from the Fuss Free Foodie with a couple of easy cheats.
Wednesday Turkey with Sweet Potato and Snow Peas served with rice
Thursday Vegetable Curry with Sausages or Lentils
Friday Grilled Salmon with Stir Fry Greens (see recipe below)
Saturday Asparagus and Mushroom risotto (or Spring Vegetables or Cauliflower and Peas) Leftovers make good risotto cakes for Sunday lunch with a green salad.
Monday Easy Roast Chicken with roast vegetables (use thigh cutlets and layer on the roast vegetables with lemon juice, rosemary, olive oil and rock salt – 50 minutes for the cutlets to cook and then crisp off the vegetables for a further 10 at 180C.
Tuesday Spaghetti Bolognaise
Wednesday Leftover Lasagne Bake with a Cos salad
Thursday Cauliflower and Chicken Curry with Steamed Rice (or better yet a bed of steamed spinach).
Friday San Choy Bow with Stir Fried Greens (scroll down for the recipe)
Saturday Grilled Steak with bay seasoned potatoes and roasted broccoli and cauliflower.
Stir Fry Greens
2 bunches of broccolini or 400g of broccoli cut into florets
2 bunches of bok choy
1/2 cup of bone broth or stock
1/2 cup soy sauce
1-2 Tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce
Combine liquid ingredients in a jug. Heat a small amount of oil in a wok and then add broccolini and stir fry for 1-2 minutes. Add liquid ingredients and bok choy and heat through and stir fry on a low heat for 10 minutes. Serve.
Turkey mince bolognaise
750g turkey mince (other mince works well too)
1 brown onion finely chopped
2 carrots peeled and diced
1 jar of passata (chopped tomatoes)
1 glass of red wine or beef stock
1 tsp chili (optional)
2 cloves garlic crushed
In a little olive oil saute onions and carrots on a low heat for a few minutes until onions are soft. Add mince, continue cooking until mince is browned and then add remaining ingredients and simmer for twenty to thirty minutes. Serve with pasta and a little grated Parmesan cheese.
Add eggplant: 1-2 eggplants approx 500g. Pierce the skin with a fork in a couple of places or it will explode in the oven and roast for 40-45 minutes at 180c. Scoop out the flesh and combine with the sauce about 5-10 minutes before serving.
Layer the sauce with lasagne sheets and bake in the oven covered for 30-40 minutes at 180C.
Christine Pope is an experienced naturopath and nutritionist but she frequently gets bored trying to think about what to cook for dinner too! Please add further menu suggestions in the comments below and share your inspiration.